Editor’s note: LaxAllStars.com and Lacrosse Idaho, a local lacrosse shop in Boise, Idaho, have joined forces to shed light on the game in this emerging area. Over the coming weeks, Lacrosse Idaho (also known as LAX ID) and LAS will be bringing you interviews with Idaho’s standout high school lacrosse players. All interviews are conducted by Idaho native, LAX ID employee and former Univ. of Idaho player Riley McNeal.
First up is an exclusive interview with Sayre Thomas, a Senior Midfielder at Boise High School. Sayre is a face-off mid, but he’s no FOGO. He’s the leading scorer for the Boise Braves this season, and he led the league in points last year. The 4-year starter has been selected as an Idaho All-Star 2 years in a row and was most recently chosen as Idaho’s US Lacrosse All American in 2010. Sayre’s team is 9-1 entering the last week of regular season play.
Who is your favorite lacrosse player?
I would either have to say Jeremy Thompson of Syracuse or Chris LaPierre of Virginia. Both are “do-it-all” middies that aren’t afraid to use there legs and run the ball coast to coast and can man up any one on defense or score at the offense end of the field. I feel their breed of “Middie” is dying as specialization increases but they are a threat to every team they play.
What is your favorite NCAA team?
I love Maryland. They are a hard nosed blue collar team that wins the battle between the boxes every game. They attack teams at their weakest; the transition. I love there fast paced up and down style I think it’s the way the game is meant to be played and the type of game fans want to see. That’s what is going to make this most popular sport in America.
What is your ideal stick combination?
I don’t have any stick combo I specifically must use but a few preferences. I like my head lighter than my shaft. So if the heads is super light I can get a lighter shaft. Right now I am using a STX Super Power with gold chrome and a black STX Sci-Ti Pro. It’s nice and light. I tape the bottom portion and top of the stick for grip and a little butt end on the bottom so I can pull down when I shoot.
How do you like to string your stick?
I like string all my own sticks. I like a lot of feel on my passes for that instant feedback and a quick release. I try to make my pockets sit right in the middle when I cradle and shoot with the ball sitting right under a U shooter, right in the sweet spot. Then when I cradle one handed the pocket swings low for a lot of hold while dodging. I don’t play with a very deep pocket or with much whip. It lets me get those quick feeds and crease shots off faster.
How do you think Idaho has progressed in Lax since you have been playing?
The youth league has exploded and so has off season play. The founding of the travel team, All Idaho, has increased the level of play in the valley as kids see the talent that is out there. I just can’t wait till my generation goes off and plays in college, learns a higher level and comes back and coaches the next generation. Also the more Division I games that are televised the more young players get to see the best of the best.
What is your favorite motivational quote?
“Expect nothing, earn everything.” I think about it every game. Every ground ball, face off and goal is something I must earn and it will never be given too me.
What is your favorite face-off move?
I don’t have a specific move I always go to. I am always switching it up, but I do like to do my move fast and stay on my feet ready to play the proceeding ground ball if my stick move fails.
What is your favorite song to get you pumped up for a game?
I have one song that always does the trick. “Dump The Clip” by Army of the Pharaohs. Any hard rap or dub step/techno will do the trick though. Just like my game, anything fast paced and loud gets my adrenaline pumping.
Do you have any pre-game rituals?
I always try and get a bite to eat but an hour before each game I put down 4 Ibuprofen with a 5 hour energy shot. I am sure my kidneys hate me but it helps me limber up for warm ups, gets me pumped and makes those hard stick checks hurt a little less so nothing slows me down.
Do you plan on playing in college? If so where at?
I am committed to play Division III at Colorado College. They have a new coach that is really revamping the program and there Conference got an automatic qualification into the NCAA DIII tournament. They are undefeated this year and will play in the national tournament this year for the first time ever. I am very excited about my future there and I will get an amazing education which was my main priority in the first place!
Thanks Sayre, best of luck to you and your team this season!
Special thanks to Lacrosse Idaho for sponsoring this interview series.